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Kites! Kites! Kites! => Sport Kites => Topic started by: Smeagol on February 21, 2011, 03:43 PM



Title: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 21, 2011, 03:43 PM
Hi all,

I guess I'm what you would call a "noob" when it comes to duals even though I've had them in one form or another for over 20 years now.  I've just recently started trying to learn tricks on them.  I'm kind of backwards in that I started out flying on quads and never really got into the trick scene on the dualies.  I would usually just go with the Flexifoils if I was in the dual mood and stack them if I wanted a workout.

I'm wondering, which kite would you recommend for learning on?  This is what I have in the collection to choose from:

NewTech French Kiss
NewTech Firestorm
Quantum Pro
Zephyr
Prophecy
Macro-Ion
Thor's Hammer
R-Sky Jordana

I've left out a few older models and generics, along with the Microns as I wouldn't think to try learning tricks on a Micron.  ;)  I'm fairly sure I do not want to attempt learning on the Thor's either unless I'm feeling insane.  I know most really depends on the flyer more than the kite itself, but I thought it might make sense to try sticking with the same kite while learning.  Is that wrong?  I know some of these are older kite designs also, would you recommend I get something more modern?

Currently my skills are extremely limited.  I've managed a few axels, fades, a lazy-susan but some was on accident while the kite was flailing around out of control.  ???  I guess you could say I'm still getting used to the basics.

Input appreciated.

thanks,
  Mike


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: tpatter on February 21, 2011, 03:50 PM
Of those you mentioned, I have flown: NewTech French Kiss, Quantum Pro, Zephyr, Prophecy, Thor's Hammer.

From those above, I would recommend the Zephyr by far for modern tricks.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: DD on February 21, 2011, 04:23 PM
i would also say zephyr and q pro


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Ace on February 21, 2011, 05:26 PM
I say go for something more modern, the Q-pro is now dated and feels a little quirky (more difficult to trick) than its modern free flowing counter parts. The Zeph, although more modern (and good looking) is still a light wind kite and it is built as such. (Not as forgiving to noob inputs) Personally I think it has some odd flight characteristics. Feels much heavier on the lines than it really should.

I say go for an actual trick trainer kite like the Mohawk, something bigger from the R-sky range or ultimatelly a Benson, can't go wrong there.

The French did start somewhat of a trick revolution a while a go....... or did we forget about that. ;)

As for Benson, his kites are in a league of their own.  :)


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: ko on February 21, 2011, 06:00 PM
an exile would def. be a great place to start, they trick but also are capable of flat axles and look good doing  the older style stuff as well. great all around kite although in my hands it liked the lower wind range, somewhat in the zephyr range you can definatley work a trade with what you have (get rid of the zeph) hope this helps have fun KO


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 21, 2011, 06:04 PM
Yep, I couldn't manage much first flight w/the Zephyr other than uncontrolled chaos, although it was in 10-15MPH which probably is not ideal for it.  I definitely need more time on it.

I've been thinking about picking up a Gemini, they seem made for tricking.  Thanks for the recommendations so far!

Heh, not a Zeph fan eh ko?

thanks,
  Mike


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: bigpappo1 on February 21, 2011, 06:49 PM
Of the kites listed, the French Kiss has a lot going for it durable, tricks, price and Steve may still have some. It's going to take a while of flying before you really catch on to what's happening. For what it's worth, there's no use in paying a bundle for a kite until then. As you move up the learning ladder and feel your ready, that's the time to spend on a better kite.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: cerfvoliste on February 21, 2011, 06:59 PM
Of all the kites on your list, I would recommend the Zephyr. dispite all the rumors, it is not a light wind kite and is very durable. The new 2011 colors are very nice too.
CV


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Alfredo on February 21, 2011, 07:41 PM
Hi. For trick flying, I don't think that the Thor is a very good option. (I feel it could limit you because of the size and wind range) I, too, would recommend a Zephyr. If you buy it, be sure to get some good lines, though. I bet you guys have said this before, but the Zephyr is the only kite I've broken lines on. Also, if you are going to use this as a trainer kite I would surely go for a kite that is modern. I say that because finding parts for a Prophecy is more difficult than finding parts for a Zephyr. Some people say they like the Zephyr better than the Quantum Pro. I would look for local flyiers that might have the kites that you are looking into buying and give them a test fly. If not, you could  buy a Z from Steve at a GREAT price and a Quantum. that would be like $260.  (less than a Quantum Pro)
You can practice on the Quantum and once you get comfortable with some basics and you are not diving into the ground, you could move on to the Z in low winds and short lines.
The Z's from Steve will not last long at that price... I got a Quantum and a Zephyr and I don't regret it.
CV- Have you tried flying with short- maybe 50ft lines? Your surroundings might also be interfering with your wind. Where do you usually fly?

Alfredo.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 21, 2011, 07:47 PM
Sorry should have clarified more, I already have all the kites I listed.  Was just wondering what would be best to learn on out of what I have or if I should seek out something else, etc.

Is the 2011 Zephyr any different than previous years besides color schemes?

-Mike


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: bigpappo1 on February 21, 2011, 07:52 PM
I hope they use better TE material!.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Alfredo on February 21, 2011, 07:56 PM
Sorry should have clarified more, I already have all the kites I listed.  Was just wondering what would be best to learn on out of what I have or if I should seek out something else, etc.

Is the 2011 Zephyr any different than previous years besides color schemes?

-Mike
No worries. The only difference between the two is the color and the bag it comes with. I am not sure if it still comes with the extra line set, though.
Alfredo.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: fidelio on February 21, 2011, 11:42 PM
+1 for the Zephyr.
to me, it'd be the least quirky and most cooperative of those on your list. over 9mph though i'd switch for the qpro and longer lines.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Allen Carter on February 21, 2011, 11:59 PM
You certainly don't need any more kites right now (never stopped me,though).

The Jordana is a great trick trainer in higher wind, but small & quick. The QPro and Zenith can do far more than most people cold learn in a year or more. The big kites are fun, but harder to learn on.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: KaoS on February 22, 2011, 12:26 AM
Out of what you have... Zephyr!  Pretty neutral, reasonably forgiving, very trick capable, and (apart from the trailing edge tunnel) fairly robust.

Despite the fact it was originally described as a "light wind kite", it isn't really - it's pretty much a standard.


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: mikenchico on February 22, 2011, 07:45 AM
Yep your set for kites for starters, the Q Pro & Zephyr cover a decent wind range while keeping enough inertia, even on the Zephyr. Watch video's, practice, fly with others for some pointers.



Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 22, 2011, 11:37 AM
Thanks all for the great input!  I will definitely put more time in on the Zeph.  I think I just got frustrated first time out as I couldn't seem to do anything with it, but it was not ideal conditions.  I have watched the videos, but it's quite a bit to take in all at once.  I'll need to watch them again I suppose.

You certainly don't need any more kites right now (never stopped me,though).
Indeed!  ..and that's only a fraction of them.  I do have a problem, heh.   ;)


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: DWayne on February 22, 2011, 12:00 PM
Make the trip up to Chico the first Sunday of the month.
You can get some hands on training from Mike & Steve. They've been at it for years.  ;)

Denny


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: tpatter on February 22, 2011, 12:42 PM
Have you seen these?

Prism Zephyr showcase (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1WJ7uq7K1Y#)

Prism Zephyr, 1st Flight (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yBB0_QimiS0#)


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: mikenchico on February 22, 2011, 01:38 PM
Make the trip up to Chico the first Sunday of the month.
You can get some hands on training from Mike & Steve. They've been at it for years.  ;)

Denny

And Denny, he might be the newcomer but he's way past me and teaching me now.   8)

I've watched all those video's and read all the instructions too and I get on the field and just go ... what hand does what now? Somebody standing there saying pull the top down let it rotate to nose away and slightly up and hit the top again is priceless, that's how Denny finally taught me the Slot Machine.





Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 26, 2011, 09:06 PM
Yep, I've seen those tpatter.. thanks for posting them up though.

I hearya Mike, I'm the same way.  I usually just get frustrated and break out the quads or flexifoils.

I'll definitely try making it to the next monthly fly though.

-Mike


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Shane on February 27, 2011, 12:51 PM
I have been flying for about 6 month now... the only kite I have is the JoE Talon UL... that said, I am certainly not a pro :-) but what has helped me with learning tricking is to focus on one trick at a time... the basics first of course... snap stall, side slide, axel, half axel...etc. I have spent whole days doing nothing but trying snap stalls... :-) after you get a few of those try something like the lazy suzan or back flip... just take your time... I just learned my first few rungs of a jacobs ladder last week. Don't get frustrated when you can't get it right away. Have fun, the tricks will come in time. :-)


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Ca Ike on February 27, 2011, 04:08 PM
Of those you mentioned, I have flown: NewTech French Kiss, Quantum Pro, Zephyr, Prophecy, Thor's Hammer.

From those above, I would recommend the Zephyr by far for modern tricks.
  I'll second this.  THe Z opened up a lot of trick for me.

Quote
Yep, I couldn't manage much first flight w/the Zephyr other than uncontrolled chaos, although it was in 10-15MPH which probably is not ideal for it.  I definitely need more time on it.
  THe Ideal range for tricking the Zeph is 3-8 and up to 12 with the weight in and a lot of forward movement


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Smeagol on February 28, 2011, 12:00 AM
Yep, that's what I'm doing, concentrating on one trick at a time.. or at least trying.  heh

I took the Zephyr out today.  Managed to do a fade or two from the ground for about 5-10 seconds.  Most of the time though it seemed as there wasn't enough wind to maintain the fade, even with me walking backwards.  Practiced snap stalls, slides and a few other basics but the wind was really fluctuating so it made being consistent difficult.

I've gotta say, I have to call BS on the 1 MPH rating for the Zeph.  I know I'm not in the ideal area being inland & all, but it must've been in the 3-10mph range today and it seemed to struggle to keep aloft at times.  I was on 50# 60' lines so I know it wasn't the lines weighing the kite down.  Maybe I need to tweak with the bridle as someone recommended.

unfortunately, mine didn't come with the weight.  I got it from the local kite shop as one of the blems Prism deemed unsellable, but for some reason they didn't include the weight.  It was a kite-only deal.

-Mike


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Ca Ike on February 28, 2011, 01:51 AM
Yep, that's what I'm doing, concentrating on one trick at a time.. or at least trying.  heh

I took the Zephyr out today.  Managed to do a fade or two from the ground for about 5-10 seconds.  Most of the time though it seemed as there wasn't enough wind to maintain the fade, even with me walking backwards.  Practiced snap stalls, slides and a few other basics but the wind was really fluctuating so it made being consistent difficult.

I've gotta say, I have to call BS on the 1 MPH rating for the Zeph.  I know I'm not in the ideal area being inland & all, but it must've been in the 3-10mph range today and it seemed to struggle to keep aloft at times.  I was on 50# 60' lines so I know it wasn't the lines weighing the kite down.  Maybe I need to tweak with the bridle as someone recommended.

unfortunately, mine didn't come with the weight.  I got it from the local kite shop as one of the blems Prism deemed unsellable, but for some reason they didn't include the weight.  It was a kite-only deal.

-Mike
  You don't really need the weight for the Zeph.  I only use it in 8+ and the weight adds a lot of oversteer.  NOW as for the rating I have had mine up in 0-2 quite a few times but it needs a lot of footwork and you have to be smooth on the inputs or you pull it out of the sky.  ANother note is I never move from the light wind knot unless its a steady 6-7 mph and even then only 1/4-1/2 inch.  One bridle mod you can make AFTER you get a feel for the kite, is move the light wind knot 2 cm higher than it is stock.  This will give you more adjustment range for light wind and still keeps it in flyable range, other than that you don't need to mod the bridle.  I also never fly my Z on anything shorter than 75' x 65-80# unless I'm goofing off in 0 wind then I have a 40' set I use.

Now if you haven't gotten one yet plan on getting a wind meter as soon as you can.  That 3-10 mph you think you were flying in was more than likely 0-5.  IF forecast says its 10 mph inland plan on it being maybe 5 mph on the ground since most monitoring stations are 50 foot up on top of buildings with a clear line of sight to the horizon.  One thing you can look at to judge is the trees and grass.  IF the leaves are rustling, grass is moving and you can barely feel the breeze, but branches(over 1/8 inch thick) aren't moving then the wind is generally 2 mph or less.

 The most important thing though is ...MOVE YOUR FEET.  As simple as that sounds its real easy to forget and you might be surprised to find when your having trouble staying aloft, its after a tight turn, stall, trick or an over aggressive input and you never moved to keep the line tension up  or take up the slack you gave, but rather standing still pumping your arms hoping there is enough wind to do it for ya.  I think we all can admit to doing that from time to time.  :)


Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: mikenchico on February 28, 2011, 10:29 PM
That 1 MPH rating is for smooth steady breezes, I didn't have much time on the Zeph but as I recall it would probably do 1 MPH in smooth beach winds without undo effort. You can pretty much assume nothing will fly "effortlessly" in variable swirling inland winds under 3 MPH. Fades from the ground inland are pretty unreliable too except on those few days the wind is coming in clear, that's not too often here. You'll soon master the 3 step, that's 3 steps back when nose up & 3 steps forward when nose down or tricking and learn to feel and take advantage of every smooth moment that happens through.



Title: Re: Recommended trainer?
Post by: Ca Ike on February 28, 2011, 11:25 PM
That 1 MPH rating is for smooth steady breezes, I didn't have much time on the Zeph but as I recall it would probably do 1 MPH in smooth beach winds without undo effort. You can pretty much assume nothing will fly "effortlessly" in variable swirling inland winds under 3 MPH. Fades from the ground inland are pretty unreliable too except on those few days the wind is coming in clear, that's not too often here. You'll soon master the 3 step, that's 3 steps back when nose up & 3 steps forward when nose down or tricking and learn to feel and take advantage of every smooth moment that happens through.


Couldn't have said it better myself.  Took me a while to figure this out and make it a habit but it does make managing shifty winds a lot easier.